A fun aspect of SXSW is that you see lots of new bands but also lots of established bands in new ways. Last year, for example, I got to see the debut performance of Tinted Windows, and though I wasn't sure how much I'd dig the Hanson kid, I have to admit, he's a pretty badass frontman for them.
It's looking like this year is going to have the same sort of thrill. MG&V, a combination of indie-band frontmen, John McCauley, Taylor Goldsmith, and Matt Vasquez, have formed a supergroup as a side project from their main bands., Deer Tick, Dawes, and Delta Spirit. It seems that when Deer Tick and Dawes were out on tour together last summer, McCauley and Goldmith started to kick around songwriting ideas. One thing led to another, and after the tour, the two wound up going to Nashville to continue their collaboration in earnest. As they were about to start recording, the two brought in Vasquez, as well as Dawes drummer (and Goldsmith's sibling), Griffin Goldsmith.
An interesting note: While McCauley didn't know Vasquez in advance, Vasquez and the other Delta Spirit members have known the Goldsmiths for years, and were helpful in giving Dawes some of their first major exposure. In our interview with Vasquez last year, he told us this about them:
And then the other opening band is a friend's band we've been promising forever that we'd take out, and finally we have the means to do it. They're this band called Dawes, they're really great. They sound just like The Band if a young Billy Joel that you could really believe in sang. And the drummer is this 18 year-old guy who plays like Levon Helm. The piano player learned bass from Rick Danko but he plays piano, and he's insane. He plays at this speakeasy in LA...they're just these crazy guys. The singer and drummer are brothers, and their dad is the only white singer in Tower of Power, so it's in the family.
An MG&V album release is slated for later this year.